This report identifies and assesses the range of electricity demand-side measures available, for both peak trimming and load reduction. It quantifies the potential electricity savings, as well as the value for money of potential measures, with the aim of informing Treasury's advice regarding the potential contribution of managing electricity demand to maintaining security of supply.

Executive summary

This report identifies and assesses the range of electricity demand-side measures available, for both peak trimming and load reduction. It quantifies the potential electricity savings as well as the value for money of potential measures, with the aim of informing Treasury's advice regarding the potential contribution of managing electricity demand to maintaining security of supply. The quantitative analysis was undertaken by Jonathan Lermit, an independent energy specialist.

For peak trimming, we look at the potential from rolling outages in the four regions where transmission capacity is of most concern: Northland; Auckland; Nelson-Marlborough and Canterbury.

For total load reduction, we evaluate the potential contribution of energy efficiency measures under three scenarios:

  • Possible – those measures that are cost-effective (cost less than new generation capacity)
  • Optimistic – a subset of the “possible” measures, which assumes uptake of relatively hard to encourage people to implement, and
  • Realistic – assuming uptake of those measures representing “low hanging fruit”, that are relatively easy to get people to implement.

Our analysis is by electricity end-use, and considers total demand (i.e. residential and commercial/industrial). We also examine the direct implementation costs, assess the rationale for Government intervention and identify key implementation risks and issues. The load curves in the regions in question are relatively flat, suggesting that there is limited scope for further peak management in these areas. Our analysis revealed that peak trimming could only be achieved by load shedding for four or more hours a day over winter months.

This clearly raises issues of acceptability and practicality to consumers.

Released 6 March 2006

Courtesy Government of New Zealand - Prepared by the Treasury
http://www.treasury.govt.nz